Steel Trappings

Hawai‘i Tourism Authority Award

HIMELE Receives HTA Funding Award for 2022

January 12, 2022 • Addison ChingNews

The Hawai‘i Tourism Authority has announced that HIMELE is one of the recipients of their calendar year 2022 Kūkulu Ola Program funding awards. Unlike previous years, the 2022 award will be funded by the HTA but administered by the Hawai‘i Community Foundation.

In a media release made on January 11, the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA) and the Hawai‘i Community Foundation (HCF) announced $1,475,000 in funding to support 30 community-based programs in Hawai‘i through HTA's Kūkulu Ola program for 2022. The release further stated that awardees included qualified community groups, practitioners and craftspeople committed to strengthening a broader understanding and appreciation of Hawaiian culture through place-based activities and engagement on each island.

"The Kūkulu Ola program allows the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority to support the important work of these organizations in perpetuating the Hawaiian culture and our identity as a people, through various projects, programs and events," said Kalani Ka‘anā‘anā, HTA Chief Brand Officer. "Investing in our communities remains a significant part of our efforts and strategic plan for fostering a better Hawai‘i for generations to come."

Information about the award also appeared on the Hawai‘i Community Foundation website.

According to the announcement there, the purpose of the Kūkulu Ola Program is "to seek community-based projects and programs that honor and perpetuate the Hawaiian culture and community. The Kūkulu Ola funds support programs that help honor and preserve the Hawaiian culture; demonstrate collaborative efforts with a high degree of community support and involvement; strive to nurture the culture by creating unique experiences and activities that are respectful and accurate; and support cultural practitioners, craftsmen, musicians, and other artists within the sector."

HIMELE has received HTA funding in prior years, either directly or indirectly through its festival partners. Festival funding from the HTA through 2019 was made through the HTA's Community Enrichment Program. Calendar year 2020 HTA funding was provided by their Kūkulu Ola program. HIMELE did not receive funding in 2021 due to a reduction of available award funds caused by the pandemic.

The current funding will go towards expenses for in-person festivals primarily on Kaua‘i, Maui, and Hawai‘i Island. HTA funding will also go towards expenses for the monthly steel guitar showcases. This funding complements funding HIMELE receives from the Hawai‘i State Foundation on Culture and The Arts and from other foundations and private donors.

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HIMELE Events
Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Week - July 8-13, 2024
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2024 Northern California Hawaiian Steel Guitar Symposium *
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Hawai‘i Island Steel Guitar Experience at Mauna Lani
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2024 Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Livestream Broadcasts

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All broadcasts originate from the Hawaiian Steel Guitar Showcase Facebook Page and YouTube Channel.


Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Japan-Hawaiian Steel Guitar Festival
July 12, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 2:30 PM - 6:30 PM HST


Royal Hawaiian Center Presents Waikīkī Steel Guitar Festival
July 13, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 11:00 AM - 2:30 PM and 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM HST
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November 15, 2024 Ho‘olaule‘a concert – 4:00 PM - 8:00 PM HST


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September 26-28, 2024 – Hilton Garden Inn, Emeryville, CA
* Registration Fee Required

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About HIMELE
HIMELE is a Hawai‘i non-profit corporation that supports music enrichment and education for people of all ages. Our purpose is to educate, promote, and perpetuate Hawaiian music, Hawaiian culture and Hawaiian musical instruments.